Book Review: The Marked Son
By: Shea Berkley
Published By: Entangled Publishing
Page Count: 334
Release Date: August 2, 2011
Source: Provided by the Publisher via NetGalley
Audience: Young Adult
Wow. I finished The Marked Son a few moments ago and I am literally speechless. There is no way anything I write in this review can possibly do this book justice. You need to preorder or make arrangements to snag a copy of this one when it hits the shelves August 2nd.
Okay, now that I have had a moment to breath and collect my thoughts I must say that this is one of the most impressive debut novels I have ever had the pleasure of reading. The characters, pacing, and world are all perfect and captivating. Berkley writes like a seasoned veteran. I was hooked from the very first chapter and even know Dylan and Kera still have their claws firmly in my heart. I didn't want to let them go. The last sentence came far too fast for my taste - especially since book two won't be out until 2012! I occasionally get serious book crushes, but not that often. I mean I don't just give my heart away to anything I read, but this one is worthy of a book crush for sure.
The Marked Son is the perfect mixture of romance, intrigue, magic, and friendship. Be prepared to go through the emotional gauntlet with this one. You will laugh, cry, cringe, despair, and love - sometimes all on the same page. I grew to care for these characters (even the minor ones) in ways I had never imagined. Their fears became my own and their joys were felt as well. It is a strong writer who can cause such reactions in readers. I predict that we will see amazing things from Shea Berkley in the future.
Another thing I loved about this book is that it transcends gender. I could see males and females loving this story. Part of the reason for this is the alternating viewpoints between Dylan and Kera. You never get too overwhelmed with the masculine or feminine focus; both sides are well balanced. Also, even though there is a strong romantic element it isn't the super sappy type that is typically found in YA books. This is a love story that rings true. Lastly, the action starts about half way through the book and doesn't let up. Male readers will enjoy the fight scenes and the odd creatures that inhabit Teag. There truly is something for everyone in this read.
One Last Gripe: I don't buy that the Lost King went after humans and half breeds because of a lost love. There has to be more than that driving him. I hope we get more of his story in future books.
My Favorite Thing About This Book: The characters
First Sentence: I was eight the first time I saw the girl.
Favorite Characters: Dylan, Kera, Bodog, Grandma, Grandpa, Leo, Jason (I couldn't choose just one!)
Least Favorite Character: Reggie
Seventeen-year-old Dylan Kennedy always knew something was different about him, but until his mother abandoned him in the middle of Oregon with grandparents he’s never met, he had no idea what.
When Dylan sees a girl in white in the woods behind his grandparents’ farm, he knows he’s seen her before…in his dreams. He’s felt her fear. Heard her insistence that only he can save her world from an evil lord who uses magic and fear to feed his greed for power.
Unable to shake the unearthly pull to Kera, Dylan takes her hand. Either he’s completely insane or he’s about to have the adventure of his life, because where they’re going is full of creatures he’s only read about in horror stories. Worse, the human blood in his veins has Dylan marked for death…